Chain, Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, America

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This triple-decker, brick-walled US military fortress was completed in 1861, with 126 cannons, to protect the bay against certain invasion during the Civil War…or not, as it turned out. Without a single shot having been fired, Fort Point was abandoned in 1900. Alfred Hitchcock made it famous in his 1956 film Vertigo – this is where Kim Novak jumped into the bay. Now the fort showcases Civil War displays and knockout panoramic viewing decks of the bridge's underside.

On Saturdays once monthly from March through October, staff demonstrate crabbing from the pier, available by lottery only (see website); November to February, inquire about spooky Saturday-night candlelight tours (reservations required).